LINGUIST List 30.2648

Thu Jul 04 2019

Calls: Philosophy of Language, Phonetics, Pragmatics, Psycholinguistics, Semantics/Germany

Editor for this issue: Everett Green <>

Date: 04-Jul-2019
From: Holden Härtl <>
Subject: Expressing the Use-Mention-Distinction: An Empirical Perspective (Workshop at DGfS 2020)
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Full Title: Expressing the Use-Mention-Distinction: An Empirical Perspective (Workshop at DGfS 2020)

Date: 05-Mar-2020 - 06-Mar-2020
Location: Hamburg, Germany
Contact Person: Holden Härtl
Meeting Email: < click here to access email >
Web Site:

Linguistic Field(s): Philosophy of Language; Phonetics; Pragmatics; Psycholinguistics; Semantics

Call Deadline: 01-Aug-2019

Meeting Description:

In a quotational construction an expression is mentioned rather than or in addition to being used denotationally. In pure quotations, for example, as in '''Berlin'' has two syllables', linguistic shapes are demonstrated in a rule-like fashion, in this case the shape of the name of Germany's capital. While the distinction between use and mention is theoretically well defined, the mechanisms of how mentioning is explicated in an utterance, however, are not fully understood yet. Consider the following examples.

a. Max is not between jobs, he's just been offered a job at the hospital.
b. Max is not ''between jobs'', he's unemployed!

Typically, quotation marks are employed to express the distinction between the use of an expression, see (1a), and mentioning it, e.g., in a scare quotation like in (1b). Beyond quotes, however, it is far less clear which means language users rely on to mark the use-mention divide. In our workshop, we aim at discussing the linguistic inventory to signal the aforementioned contrast by considering, among others, the following aspects:

> Acoustics and phonetics: Is mentioning reflected in acoustic parameters such as duration, fundamental frequency, intensity, etc.?

> Semantics and pragmatics: Which role do modal and discourse particles play for, e.g., scare quotation, cf. 'Na, das ist ja ein ''Zufall''!' ('PRT, that is PRT a ''coincidence''', 'What a ''coincidence''!')? What is their semantic content and pragmatic function?

> Gestures and sign language: How systematic is the use of air quotes? For which types of quotation are they used (e.g., scare quotation)? Which function(s) do they have? How are quotation and the different types expressed in sign language?

> Information structure: What is the information-structural status of quoted expressions? How does, e.g., scare quotation interact with focus?

Invited speaker: Markus Steinbach (Göttingen)

Organizers: Holden Härtl and Marcel Schlechtweg (Kassel)

2nd Call for Papers:

Empirically working scholars investigating the expression of the use-mention distinction are invited to submit proposals for talks for this workshop. Pure and scare quotation are of particular interest, but contributions looking at other types of quotation, such as direct or mixed quotation, are also welcome. Abstracts should be anonymous and not exceed 2 pages (A4 or US Letter), including examples and references, using a 12pt font with 2.5 cm (1 inch) margins on all sides. Please send your abstract electronically in PDF- and in DOC/DOCX-format by August 01, 2019 to holden.haertl[at] and schlechtweg[at] Upon submission, please indicate whether you prefer to give a talk of 30 or 60 minutes (including discussion).

The workshop will be part of the 42nd annual meeting of the German Linguistic Society (DGfS 2020) to be held at the University of Hamburg from March 04-06, 2020. Participants will have to register for the conference and are not supposed to present a talk at any of the parallel DGfS workshops, according to the rules of the DGfS. Co-authored talks are excluded from this rule.

A limited number of travel grants of up to 500 Euro each are available for accepted contributions by DGfS members without/with low income.

Dates: ​

Deadline for abstract submission: August 01, 2019
Notification of acceptance: Early September, 2019
Workshop: March 05-06, 2020

Page Updated: 04-Jul-2019